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Steven Mead Mouthpieces Experiences?

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  • StarGemini
    Junior Member
    • Feb 2022
    • 24

    #16
    Originally posted by NLeuph View Post
    I have no experience with stainless steel mouthpieces. But i feel that, unless you have a certain metal allergy, it is a bit of a gimmick.
    By no means am I saying he's right, but emailing with Mr Mercer, he said that "Regarding stainless steel it has a softer feel on your face and doesn’t lock in to your chops in the same way as silver does. You also have the added advantage that you never need to worry about any plating wear as it is polished metal. A looked after stainless mouthpiece will look like new after 20 years."

    No idea if that means that the mouthpiece will be a bit "slippery-er", but I know I definitely can't play as well if there's spit on the rim of my mouthpiece.

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    • miketeachesclass
      Senior Member
      • Feb 2016
      • 461

      #17
      I do feel like stainless feels "slippery-er" than silver, personally.

      I also feel like for me, stainless doesn't quite resonate in the same way as brass. Something missing in the upper harmonics maybe.

      Mike

      Originally posted by StarGemini View Post
      By no means am I saying he's right, but emailing with Mr Mercer, he said that "Regarding stainless steel it has a softer feel on your face and doesn’t lock in to your chops in the same way as silver does. You also have the added advantage that you never need to worry about any plating wear as it is polished metal. A looked after stainless mouthpiece will look like new after 20 years."

      No idea if that means that the mouthpiece will be a bit "slippery-er", but I know I definitely can't play as well if there's spit on the rim of my mouthpiece.
      Mike Taylor

      Illinois Brass Band
      Fox Valley Brass Band

      Comment

      • StarGemini
        Junior Member
        • Feb 2022
        • 24

        #18
        Originally posted by miketeachesclass View Post
        I do feel like stainless feels "slippery-er" than silver, personally.

        I also feel like for me, stainless doesn't quite resonate in the same way as brass. Something missing in the upper harmonics maybe.

        Mike
        Tying into what Franz said, that since stainless is a less heavy of a metal, then perhaps there is indeed less resonance than there would be on a denser brass mouthpiece.

        Comment

        • dsurkin
          Senior Member
          • Feb 2014
          • 526

          #19
          Originally posted by Alex View Post
          I'm a golfer and when I started playing a long time ago, you had few choices of "types" of balls. With most brands, it was a higher compression ball with a black number or a lower compression ball with a red number. Better players used the black. Now you can actually go to a "ball fitting", like a club fitting, and you have a myriad of choices - high spin, low spin, no spin, distance, whatever - makes my head spin. Same with mouthpieces today. [snip].
          From elementary school through high school, all my teachers only recommended Bach mouthpieces. I never even encountered other brands until college. Well, there were a few Conn mouthpieces included in the case with the school's Conn horns, but my teachers never liked those mouthpieces. I've had my Bach 6.5AL for a long, long time (now used only on my trombone).
          Dean L. Surkin
          Mack Brass MACK-EU1150S, BB1 mouthpiece
          Bach 36B trombone; Bach 6.5AL and Faxx 7C mouthpieces (pBone on loan to granddaughter)
          Steinway 1902 Model A, restored by AC Pianocraft in 1988; Kawai MP8, Yamaha KX-76
          See my avatar: Jazz (the black cockapoo; RIP) and Delilah (the cavapoo) keep me company while practicing

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          • NLeuph
            Member
            • Jun 2022
            • 65

            #20
            @stargemini, did you already decide on the mouthpiece or pieces? Just being really curious ;-).
            Geneva Mentor euphonium
            Mercer & Barker GW4

            Comment

            • StarGemini
              Junior Member
              • Feb 2022
              • 24

              #21
              Originally posted by NLeuph View Post
              @stargemini, did you already decide on the mouthpiece or pieces? Just being really curious ;-).
              I've decided on getting the brass-silver-plated GW5. With shipping, it comes to about $205 USD.
              Admittedly though, I am a bit timid on pressing the "buy" button, I'm thinking maybe I should be practicing more than worrying about getting a new mouthpiece haha

              Comment

              • NLeuph
                Member
                • Jun 2022
                • 65

                #22
                Originally posted by StarGemini View Post
                I've decided on getting the brass-silver-plated GW5. With shipping, it comes to about $205 USD.
                Admittedly though, I am a bit timid on pressing the "buy" button, I'm thinking maybe I should be practicing more than worrying about getting a new mouthpiece haha
                Haha I feel your pain! If you decide to buy, let us know what your experiences are with the mouthpiece:-).
                Geneva Mentor euphonium
                Mercer & Barker GW4

                Comment

                • EthanL
                  Junior Member
                  • Jul 2017
                  • 16

                  #23
                  I bought an Sm3u many many years ago when I was in high school, a year or two after that series released. There was something up with the shank, didn't quite seal and air leaked. Tried it in multiple horns, same issue. I did enjoy the sound, provided a lot of color compared to my Schilke 51D. However, as the years went on, I found the rim to be too sharp for me. I tried the Sm4U, smaller rim, still too sharp, not sure what I was thinking there. So, then I snagged a SM3.5 and I certainly prefer the rim contour over the classic series compared to the ultra. The sound was much warmer, rim was more comfortable for my preference however, I had an issue with overblowing quite a lot giving me a rash sound on my sovereign, wonky intonation all over the horn. I think I prefer the classic series over the ultra if I had to choose. I tried a friends SM3 and liked it much more than my 3.5, felt more balanced. But luckily tried out some Warburton pieces in Titusville. I'm currently on a Warburton 4GD and seems to fit my playing rather well. Really brought a focused sound with a lot of core, consistent timbre across the range that I couldn't quite hone with all the denis wicks I tried.
                  Ethan Lenczycki
                  Elementary Music Teacher
                  Besson Sovereign 967
                  Warburton 4GD

                  Comment

                  • NLeuph
                    Member
                    • Jun 2022
                    • 65

                    #24
                    Originally posted by EthanL View Post
                    The souI had an issue with overblowing quite a lot giving me a rash sound on my sovereign, wonky intonation all over the horn.
                    I do recognize the intonation issue. With the SM4 classic c# and e in the staff (treble cleff) were always a bit uncentered. I did not have this issue with other mouthpieces on the same instrument.
                    Geneva Mentor euphonium
                    Mercer & Barker GW4

                    Comment

                    • CousinJack
                      Member
                      • Apr 2020
                      • 75

                      #25
                      In the past I have used a variety of the Wick mouthpieces.

                      I mostly used an SM4X, which I still play occasionally for a week at a time to keep everything fresh. It's a decent mouthpiece, but for me I found when playing loud and high there would be a load of back pressure on any instrument. Probably a technique thing, but the cup is shallower than the equivalent SM4 or SM4U. If you like your SM5 as others have said I would just get a new one of them, or even just get it replated!

                      FWIW, I have moved to a K&G 4D+ and not looked back.
                      Adams E2 | K&G 4D+

                      Comment

                      • franz
                        Senior Member
                        • Dec 2015
                        • 392

                        #26
                        When, in 2007, I purchased the Besson Prestige it came with an Alliance mouthpiece (I don't remember if 2 or 3), but I didn't like it and I changed it for a classic SM3, with which I was happy. Later, when the ultra series came out I bought the SM3U, but it was a real disappointment, so I switched to the SM3X which, overall, was quite satisfactory. The Ultra series, compared to the classic SM, has a sharper edge and a smaller internal diameter of the cup and has more mass. Since I started using K&G mouthpieces it's a completely different story and I'm not going back. I also have a very good feeling with the recently acquired Warburton Demondrae: it produces a nice sound with little effort but with the K&G I have much more resistance.
                        2007 Besson Prestige 2052, 3D+ K&G mouthpiece; JP373 baritone, 4B modified K&G mouthpiece; Bach 42GO trombone, T4C K&G mouthpiece; 1973 Besson New Standard 3 compensated valves, 3D+ K&G modified mouthpiece; Wessex French C tuba, 3D+ K&G modified mouthpiece.

                        Comment

                        • StarGemini
                          Junior Member
                          • Feb 2022
                          • 24

                          #27
                          I have actually been looking into some K&G mouthpieces after reading that Robbert Vos uses one. Hadn't heard much about them beforehand. The size 5's specs are quite similar between the K&G and the M&B, but to get one to Australia, it is $42 USD cheaper for the K&G... More to ponder on I guess.

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